When and why were the Southeast Community Facility (SECF) and Greenhouses built?
The SECF and Greenhouse were constructed as part of an agreement between the City and County of San Francisco and residents of Bayview Hunters Point to mitigate the adverse environmental and social impacts of the expansion of the Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant during the 1970s and 1980s. They were intended to benefit the community by providing meaningful economic and workforce development opportunities through educational programs, hands-on training and job opportunities at both the SECF and adjacent Greenhouses.
Who owns the facilities?
The Southeast Community Facility and Greenhouses are owned and maintained by the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) on behalf of the City and County of San Francisco. The SECF houses a number of tenant groups that benefit the Bayview Hunters Point community. In addition, appointed by the Mayor, the Southeast Community Facility Commission provides guidance for programs at the facilities and serves as a community forum to promote job training, educational and event opportunities for all Southeast residents.
For a full legal history, visit the history page.
Southeast Community Facility
How did you choose the current tenants?
Originally, City College leased the entire SECF in 1987. By the mid-1990s, City College began subleasing space to various organizations including Human Services Agency, Renaissance Parents of Success and Hunters Point Family. In 2011, after hearing concerns regarding the need for additional programming to serve more residents, the SFPUC initiated a community engagement process to gain a better understanding of what was working at the SECF. Over 100 faith-based, private, public and nonprofit sector leaders and community members provided their opinions. The results were clear. The SECF needed physical renovations and enhanced programming to truly serve as a community asset. A tenant mix was identified at this time that included existing tenants and the addition of Five Keys Charter School. Five Keys Charter School officially joined as a tenant when renovations of the Phelps Wing added additional classrooms. Wu Yee’s Children’s Services was welcomed in 2014 when Head Start, a tenant of the SECF since 1990, selected Wu Yee Children’s Services as their provider through a competitive process.
What services are currently offered at the Southeast Community Facility?
Please visit here for full descriptions of tenants and programming.
What is the current status of the SECF?
A three-month targeted outreach process in 2015 demonstrated that residents viewed the option to build a new SECF more favorably than renovating the existing 30 year old building and as the best long-term investment into the community. To ensure this preference was a shared vision of the larger community, the SFPUC elected to conduct a robust stakeholder engagement in collaboration with 16 community partners. The eight month outreach process in 2016 reached more than 29,000 people (2,500 in-person conversations and 27,000 online engagements). The quantitative and qualitative input received from 50 meetings and events and more than 1,000 surveys identified a preference for a new building for the SECF (71%).
Why was the location at Third and Evans selected?
The community assessment conducted in 2011 in partnership with the SECF Commission and tenants, residents and community leaders identified that the then 25-year-old building needed substantial physical improvements and had old mechanical systems, outdated design elements and limited parking. Some basic improvements made to the Phelps Wing indicated that additional investments would be potentially infeasible or only include basic aesthetic and mechanical improvements. The SFPUC began to explore the possibility of building a new community center on land that it already owned on Third Street at Evans (1550 Evans). During the outreach process, community members emphasized that the new site was viewed more favorably because of its proximity to the light rail and more central location. What will happen to 1800 Oakdale when the new building is being constructed? Wastewater staff will work with the SECF Commission and tenants to ensure upkeep and maintenance of the building until the new SECF is open and ready for operations. The SFPUC will also look for ways to improve utilization in the short-term.
What is the current status of the Greenhouses?
The 2016 stakeholder engagement process revealed a preference for an interim plan to serve the community while the SFPUC works to rebuild the Greenhouses. More than 1,000 surveys and 500 comments were submitted through 50 events, focus groups and presentations. The quantitative and qualitative input identified a preference for a Grants Program to support existing community-based organizations that provide programming at the intersection of urban agriculture, land use and workforce development.
When will the RFPs for the Grants Program be issued?
The SFPUC estimates that RFPs will be released before May 2017.
Why did the Greenhouses close?
In January 2015, the SFPUC commissioned a due diligence study (AECOM/WRE) to identify the current physical state of the Greenhouses and inform the best approach to any potential future repairs, renovations or replacement. The report identified major concerns around health and safety code issues and established that the Greenhouses are beyond short-term repair. In order to maintain our commitment to the health and safety of our tenants and their employees, Greenhouse tenants were given 18 months notice to relocate.
How did the SFPUC help tenants with relocation?
The SFPUC recognized that it was a challenging time for businesses to relocate. The SFPUC committed to making things as easy as possible and provided relocation assistance, including:
Expert relocation consulting (Associated Right of Way Services) to assist each tenant in finding a suitable relocation site;
Reimbursement of actual moving costs up to $100,000 per tenant;
Reimbursement of business re-establishment costs of up to $10,000 per tenant;
As-needed job placement assistance for current employees of the Greenhouses who reside within zip code 94124.
All three tenants have found new locations for their businesses and have vacated the Greenhouses.
What are the plans for the permanent replacement of the Greenhouses?
Once the interim Grants Program has been put in place to provide environmental and educational benefits that was intended to be provided by the Greenhouses, the SFPUC will explore best practices and models for the long-term. This could include opportunities in city greening, climate resiliency and healthy food access.
How to Get Involved
Will the community be able to provide input for the new center and grants program?
Community members are encouraged to attend the monthly SECF Commission meetings as a public forum for residents to share their input and provide comments.
How can I contribute my feedback and opinions?